It’s no surprise that Alicia Silverstone’s video of pre-chewing her 10 month old’s son’s food, known as pre-mastication, went viral last week. For most of us, the thought of transferring food from our mouth to our child’s, like a mother bird, makes us cringe a bit.

Many of us would never consider trying it. Yet, when it comes to our spiritual walk, we may find it quite tempting.

One indication that we may be practicing pre-mastication is when we find ourselves depending on a pastor’s sermon as our mainstay of spiritual food. After all, he’s done the chewing — praying, studying, preparing — throughout the week. Surely showing up once a week, opening our mouths Bibles and swallowing listening is sufficient.

What if we depended on one meal a week to sustain our physical bodies? We’d survive, but lack strength and endurance to accomplish all God has planned for us.

So how can we avoid spiritual pre-mastication?

  • Study the Word for ourselves. Local Christian bookstores offer a plethora of studies. When we spend time going deeper in the Word’s meaning, truth is transferred from the head to the heart, it’s digested, and lives change.
  • Consider taking notes on Sunday mornings. Engaging two senses instead of one increases the likelihood of our being able to recall the truths heard — not only that day, but throughout the week and beyond.
  • Meditate and memorize the Word. Meditating doesn’t require a sandy beach, loose fitting clothes, or music playing softly in the background. We choose one verse a day. Write it down. Keep it with us throughout the day and re-visit it often, asking the Lord what He would have to teach us through it. When we meditate, we memorize, and when we practice these disciplines, we’re digesting the living and active Word of God into our very being.
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. John 14:26 ESV